I read about the Moto Guzzi Le Mans in a magazine one day. The Le Mans had an 850cc engine in 1977 and was based on a bike that won the famous Le Mans race. It was magnificent, and I wanted it. The only problem was that the dealer only had the Moto Guzzi 1000SP available at the time. The Le Mans were all sold out. So I traded my Suzuki in for a brand new Moto Guzzi. The 1000SP had a 950cc air cooled 90° four stroke, v-twin engine and was heavy. However, it sported 61 hp that took it to about 112 mph. It also had the first shaft drive I had seen and an interesting hydraulic braking system. If you pulled on the right brake handle, the brake went to the right front disk, and if you pressed on the foot brake pedal, half the braking power went to the rear disk and half to the left front disk brake. I decided that for the type of country driving I was planning, it was perfect. I bought her and named her Donatella.
One day I met a neighbor at my kids kindergarten. His name was James Knowles and he was a sculptor. We would often go to his studio/farm when he poured his bronzes. He always stopped to look at my Guzzi and told me that he would love to get one someday. Soon it was my wife’s birthday and she fell in love with one of James’ sculptures. After drinking a couple of bottles on wine one evening we came to an agreement to swap his bronze for my Guzzi.